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Wednesday, 23 November 2011
Page: 13699

Mrs D'ATH (Petrie) (10:01): I rise to speak on a wonderful Cancer Council initiative: the Relay for Life. For the fourth year running I have entered a team in the Redcliffe Relay for Life, on 5 and 6 November. My team is called the Petrie Possums. We go out for the full 18 hours and walk around the field to raise money and support the Cancer Council in the important work that it does.

This year the Redcliffe Relay for Life raised $20,452. I am pleased to say that the Petrie Possums were again the largest fundraisers. This year we raised $7,660. I want to acknowledge all of the people who supported the fundraising for the event: the Australian Workers Union; Dean Wells, the state member for Murrumba; Rod Chiapello, owner of Bracken Ridge McDonalds; a couple of my local federal colleagues who supported me; Workplace Solutions; the Redcliffe Environmental Forum; the Redcliffe Leagues Club; Helen Marie Butler, who works for Suncorp at Kippa Ring and who has come onto my team for the last three years and individually raised $850 for the event; Lions Kippa Ring; Rotary Sunrise Redcliffe; and Shane Newcombe. I thank these people, who are my largest sponsors, but also every person who stepped up and supported this event.

This is an extremely important event—one of the largest fundraising events for the Cancer Council around the country. These events happen all over states all throughout the year. They are fantastic events. It is tiring. I went 36 hours without sleep. Every muscle in my body ached for days. My feet were extremely sore. But every minute was worth it, because I know personally two people who have lost their lives to cancer in the last 12 months and many others who have been getting treatment this year but have so far been winning the fight. I myself had to take a month off last December to recover from laser surgery to remove a skin cancer on my nose. I know that if you are not vigilant these things can become a lot more serious. We need to make sure we are getting check-ups, and we need to make sure that we act quickly, because the survival rates are now a lot better—but there are too many people being diagnosed with cancer. That is why events like this are so important.

I thank Neville Cullen from the Redcliffe RSL, the chair of the Redcliffe Relay for Life committee; Regyn Fitzpatrick, the entertainment coordinator; and Kate White, the Cancer Council coordinator for this event. It was a great event. We are already planning for next year. It is so important that we raise money for research but also support people going through treatment.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: I thank the honourable member. In accordance with standing order 193 the time for members' constituency statements has concluded.